วันเสาร์ที่ 21 มีนาคม พ.ศ. 2552


Pros Cheap, fun and nippy in traffic

Cons Loud, not easy to see the sights, pollution

Tuk Tuks

The Bangkok Tuk Tuk ( pronounced took-took ) is probably every visitor's favourite means of transport. They have an undeniable appeal and quality to them that makes them irresistible to all that come to Bangkok or Thailand.

The Tuk Tuk is a three wheeled, motorised rickshaw and can seat, comfortably, two adults but it is not uncommon to see 6 or 7 students crammed in, all sharing the fare; and the drivers don't seem to mind.

Bangkok Tuk Tuks are a great way of traveling short distances and as long as you are not expecting to do any sight seeing along the way. We say this because the canopy that covers the Tuk Tuk slants downwards towards the front slightly as well as curving round the sides at exactly eye level and so the journey is void of any ability to see what is going on around you unless you travel in a doubled up position.

Tuk Tuks can be found almost anywhere. You can either hail them as they come towards you or walk up to the driver if one is waiting on the side of the street. A lot of the time, if they see you walking down the street, they will drive up to you and drive at your walking speed in the hopes you decide to ask for a ride. Either that or you'll hear " hey". THis sounds rude to us but it's a direct translation of what they would say in Thai and in Thai, it's normal, formal, and polite.

In the rainy season, most tuk tuks have polythene sides that drop down and provide some sort of protection against the heavy Thailand rains, but you'll almost certainly get wet.

The cost of a tuk tuk all depends on whether you know where you are going and how much that journey might cost in a taxi. If you'd normally pay 50 Baht in a taxi, ask for 30 or 40 Baht and this is based on the fact that a taxi is more comfortable, has air conditioning etc.

Rather than take the very first Tuk Tuk that come along, ask a low price and wave them on if they refuse. It doesn't mean you've got the price wrong, it could mean they aren't willing to go for that amount, so try again with the next one. You'll eventually get it right.

One note of warning Tuk Tuk drivers, and others too, make extra money by taking tourists to certain shops. The shop owner will give the Tuk Tuk driver money for bringing in new customers and so you could find yourself being taken somewhere whether you like it or not.
Also, Tuk Tuk drivers can almost always be found outside large hotels waiting for tourists. They do this because they know they will make more from tourists who don't know how much they should be paying. Avoid these drivers if ou can and walk on down the road and stop one that's passing. You'll get a better deal and won't have as much "trouble".

The famous three-wheeled taxi of Bangkok.